ŇVery frequently we find our men surprised, where there is a small guard doing duty, stripped of all their clothing and their throats cut from ear to earÓ
Camp at Warrington Junction
Wednesday, December 30, 1863
I am Sergeant of Camp Guard today and I am writing to you from the Guard House. Mr. Edic came back late last night and today he was placed in the Guard House in my charge. He overstayed his furlough 3 days but I hardly think anything will be done with him, for he says it is not his fault bust some accident on the railroad that detained him.
Those things were equal to a surprise party to me for I did not expect them, but I thank you very much for them. Tell Ida, bless her little heart, that candy was good she sent me. It is the first I have had since I left home. Tell her Pa eat it all up. I wish I had a good picture of her. Them you sent me has all worn out pretty much in my pocket so I can hardly see the face.
I suppose you will be somewhat surprised when you see we are at Warrington Junction. I was very much surprised when I found out we had to come here. It is on account of the men reenlisting. I felt sorry to leave my quarters but it had to be.
The country around here is infested very thick with Guerillas and our duty, picket duty, is very heavy on us at present, 25 men out of a company at one time. The Guerillas have become very bold around here of late. They are making raids on us nightly and very frequently we find our men surprised, where there is a small squad doing duty, stripped of all their clothing and their throats cut from ear to ear. Night before last we all loaded our pieces and we expected an attack all night but they did not come.
I hope before you get this you will have received that letter with money. I sent fifty dollars to you for a Christmas present and day after tomorrow we will get mustered for 2 months pay.
Two days after today, we of the 146 will be in this Rebellion 3 different years: 1862, 1863, and 1864. So if it should end this winter we would be in this war three years after all. Oh, we all hope for peace this winter. But the soldiers have suffered and endured so much though the folly of Rebels, they all unite one other in saying that there can be no peace until every vestige of Rebellion is swept from the face of the earth, and all seem determined in their resolve. The feeling is far different from what it was last winter. Then they wanted peace on any terms, but it is not so now.
I will have to build me up another shanty now as soon as I can get time, for I have to sleep on the ground until I can make another. I forgot to tell you I am well and hope these lines will find you all enjoying the same good health.
As my room is getting short, I must come to a close. Give my love to all inquiring friends and to all my folks. I wish you all a happy New Year. I wish I had something to send the children for a New YearŐs present, but we have been so busy I have not had time to do anything scarcely. Take good care of yourself, dear Clara, and little ones, and may Heaven protect you all. Goodbye for now until you hear from me again.
From your husband with love,
Sergt. P.L. Dumont